Michael Gerson / Politics

The Importance of History

WASHINGTON -- The monumental tapestry triptych by Marc Chagall, hanging in the State Hall of the Israeli Knesset in Jerusalem, hints at some of the artist's own memories, including from his childhood in Vitebsk, Russia. But these float among ...

Too Detached to Lead?

WASHINGTON -- Having once served a president, I don't begrudge any president a vacation. There is, in fact, no escape from this relentless job. A change of scenery does not involve a change in responsibilities, or even a release from the essence ...

No Time to Lead From Behind

WASHINGTON -- Responding to the horrifying murder of photojournalist James Foley, Secretary of State John Kerry declared, "ISIL [the Islamic State] and the wickedness it represents must be destroyed." President Obama said, "people like this ...

Rand Paul's Bogus Outreach

WASHINGTON -- Why should Republicans engage in outreach to African-Americans, even though the level of suspicion is so high and the yield in votes is likely to be so low?

Even among some reform-oriented conservatives, what might be called the ...

The Paradox of American Diversity

WASHINGTON -- While I was growing up in an overwhelmingly white, resolutely middle-class neighborhood west of St. Louis, the city of Ferguson -- about 20 minutes north around I-270, past the airport -- was never an intended destination. It was a ...

Smacked by Reality in the Middle East

WASHINGTON -- So ends a foreign policy experiment that began with two choices in 2011. In that hinge year, President Obama decided to stay out of the Syrian conflict and to passively accept the withdrawal of all U.S. ground forces from Iraq (which...